Tough watches are reserved for those who love and need toughness more than anything else. But what do you define as toughness?
There are watches that are designed to withstand extreme shock and vibration but yet highly sensitive to chemical exposure such as insect repellent or even sweat. There may not be a universal metric as to what defines a watch as being tough. But I see suitability of a watch to be used by the military as probably the best testament to this quality.
If we go by this metric alone, it is easy to conclude that some of the most rugged watches in the world have to be the likes of G-Shock and Luminox military watches.
Ever since Casio unveiled the first G-Shock watch to the world 30 years ago, G-Shock watches continues to build their reputations as the toughest watches on the planet.
There are also tough watches other than G-Shock but most of them excel only in specific conditions that they are optimally designed for. Furthermore, no other brand offer such extensive tough watches collection as Casio G-Shock does.
Brands such as Seiko may have earned respect from the community for some of their watch models but that is all. None of them, not even the likes of Luminox and Suunto, is able to diminish Casio G-Shock’s status as the tough watch specialist.
Tough watch hunters are made up of different types of people.
If you are an adventure seeker who loves parachuting or skydiving, only the toughest watches can survive the menacing forces of gravity. If you are an adventure seeker who loves scuba diving, only the toughest watches can survive the pressure at 100m below the ocean surface. If you are an active member of the military, you jolly well know any battlefield is unpredictable and only the toughest watches can survive the harshest and extreme condition of a battlefield.
If your watch is required to survive both inland and on water, G-Shock Frogman is something that is well worth considering. While you may still find tough watches other than G-Shock that are suitable for use by professional scuba diver, only G-Shock aviation is good enough well, for the aviators.
G-Shock Military Inspired Watches
Other than extraordinary toughness, G-Shock military watches boast one additional characteristic.
These military watches have been carefully designed to be worn along with camouflage uniforms. Typical camouflage colors such as olive green, navy blue and black have become the characteristic of military inspired line of G-Shock watches.
However, with the battlefield shifting from jungle to the desert, Casio is quick to address the growing demand. Recently, white has been added to the typical camouflage colors that have been the trademark of G-Shock military series. If you like the idea of a white tough watch, white G-Shock collection may be your cup of tea.
Luminox Military Watches
Luminox military watches are popular alternatives to those who are looking for tough watches other than G-Shock. Design of G-Shock watches is highly polarizing. With extra large bezel, you can tell with one look if a watch you are looking at is a G-Shock.
You either love it or hate it. Luminox watches is not the first thing that comes to mind when one is exploring alternatives for the toughest watches, but they are in fact, among the best alternatives to G-Shock.
Luminox started way back in 1989. It was only in 1993 that the brand received its first taste of stardom when it was commissioned by US Navy SEAL to develop a watch that the world’s most elite forces can use and depend on. Up till today, the watches developed for this purpose are still marketed under the same Luminox 3000 series.
To be selected by US Navy SEAL and Air Force definitely qualifies Luminox watches as tough but being tough is not quite the same as being the toughest.
Take a look at the video below to see how guys at Casio G-Shock take their game of toughness to an entirely unimaginative level. Do you believe that you can hammer down a G-Shock and it will still survive intact? Take a look at the video and let me know what you think.
Other Tough Watches than G-Shock
Lesser known alternatives for tough watches other than G-Shock include Marathon and Suunto.
These names may not be familiar among casual watch seekers but they do have strong reputation in their own right.
For example, the latter makes some amazing watches for adventure seekers and Suunto dive watches are popular among professional divers. If you are looking for watches that boast not only toughness but also style, selected models from brands such as Seiko and Citizen are definitely worthy of your consideration.
Seiko SKX007 is one model that regularly pops up with the mention of watch that is both stylish and tough. Seiko BFK SKA371 is another model that has attracted quite a cult-like following. This is following the watch’s ability to withstand boiling temperature, weight of a car and many more.
In summary, I think G-Shock is still the champion when it comes to rugged watches. To me, the question is not about which brand but which G-Shock model is the toughest. Do not be confused with the G-Shock military term used. G-Shock military inspired series simply means that they are going to be of camouflage color. Take a look at our simple guide and see how you can decode G-Shock serial number instantly. If you are looking for the toughest digital watch, you only need to look at G-Shock Master of G series.
If you are looking for the toughest analog watch, the story is of a much more different picture. If I had to pick 3 contenders for the World’s toughest watches, they would be G-Shock GWA1000FC-5A, Luminox F-117 Nighthawk 6400 Series and Marathon Chronograph Pilot.
Hamilton Watch Company is a maker of fine watches popping onto the scene in 1892. However, they did not make their big splash until World War I, when the company started developing wristwatches for soldiers to use in the field. Keeping proper time was crucial to ground soldiers and to battle strategies, and no watchmaker was as reliable as Hamilton in the trenches. Their excellent craftsmanship propelled the American-based brand to new heights in the second World War and beyond. And today, Hamilton still creates top-shelf military wrist...read more
When people go looking for the best tough watch their money can buy, they often look at the Swiss for products. This is the case with people who are fans of the Swiss watchmakers Tissot. Founded in 1853, Tissot has been churning out quality, reliable products for well over a century, and one of their newest releases is the Tissot T Touch Expert. Though how, exactly, does the Tissot T Touch stack up as a high-quality watch? Tissot T Touch Expert: Only the Expert Knows what’s Best One of the first things to notice about this watch is that...read more
Finding the best tough watch that will fit your wrist so perfectly that you don’t even notice it as you’re wearing it is a tough task that even I have trouble identifying at times. The watch under review here is known as the Alpina Seastrong Diver 300. For those that may not be aware, dive watches are ones that can be worn up to a certain amount of meters under water and are generally water resistant, which can prove useful for a number of reasons. I wore the Alpina Seastrong Diver 300 to test it out and the following is my review...read more
The Suunto Ambit3 is a tough GPS watch with big ambitions. Not content to track my route while I’m gamely stumbling forward on my morning jog, the attractive device can also monitor my heart rate. The recorded data fills the face of the wristwatch on an intuitive graphical interface while Bluetooth smarts simultaneously transmit the same information to a smartphone for further analysis. This rich feature-set is packed inside a 50-mm case with an aluminum bezel. Protection of those sensitive electronic components, sensors and...read more
The days when a wristwatch was manufactured solely for informing us of the time and date are long gone. There are still many classic and stylish timepieces on the market designed to do nothing but relay the time and date while placing an accent on style and fashion, but there’s always room for additional functions, features that don’t require any sacrifice on the fashion front. The Seiko SANA411 flight alarm chronograph accomplishes this objective with surety and poise, injecting style with technical prowess that’s designed...read more